What a fun weekend. Our old friends Mark and Tina’s eldest daughter Alisha was getting married to Tom and they had chosen The Officers Mess at Fort Takapuna as the wedding venue. A fantastic spot and where Fiona’s family had spent some years in the officers housing by Narrow Neck beach.
Just as it says, The officers Mess has been converted into a Wedding Venue and Café and was the old Officers Mess for the Army and later used by the Navy as well. Its a lovely old building which looks out over the harbour towards Rangitoto Island.
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Fiona’s dad Norm was CO of Fort Cautley which was then the HQ for the Army’s 3rd Battalion. There were officers and senior NCO houses from the current buildings all the way down to Narrow Neck Beach.
Fort Takapuna has a huge history. It was originally built to fend off the Russians in the 1860’s and later updated for the two world wars in case the Japanese or Germans got down here. It is now looked after by DOC and more information on it can be seen here.
Its well worth a look around and the carpark is huge, perfect for Motorhomes and Caravans.
When Friday came around, Fiona and I decided we would make a weekend of it and stay in Devonport on Friday night. We earlier met our old friends Dani and Grant at the Esplanade Hotel for a few cold ones and afterwards tea at the wharf.
The next day was wedding day and I packed up Rafe and headed off to the venue where we had permission to stay overnight in the carpark as guests.
I spent the day having a really good look around the fort while Fiona was getting her hair done. There was a soccer game on at the playing field there which was fun to watch. I have no idea who was playing but it was fun to watch and I really enjoyed shooting a few piccies of it. I haven’t photographed any soccer since my days on the Herald and the Auckland Star so it was fun. Soccer is one of the hardest games to photograph as so I was pleased that I got a couple or reasonable piccies from it being as rusty as I am.
The forecast rain held off so the ceremony was held outside looking out on the harbor. It was a bit of a catchup with old friends for us as Gary, Chris, Mark and Tina are all old Boatie mates along with Geoff and Bev who were also there. We were all put on Table 4! Our friends Gary and Chris were joint MC’s and they did a great job. It was nice to catch up with the extended families and old friends too, many of them had come over from Aussie for the occasion.
The wedding went well, the food was great and it was a fun night. We finished the night in Rafe with “Table 4” friends for a nightcap and cups of tea.
Rafe’s Track map